3D to 2D CAD Model Flattening

3D to 2D CAD Model Flattening for Rhino3D

Accurate 3D to 2D flattening of developable and non-developable surfaces

ExactFlat for Rhino extends the capabilities of Rhino 3D to create 2D flat surfaces from 3D CAD models. It is unique because it was created to solve the problem of generating flat patterns from complex, non-developable surface CAD files. For manufacturers in automotive, aerospace, marine, apparel, technical textiles, furniture and accessories working with fabrics, ExactFlat for Rhino helps manufacturers bring their products to market faster.

ExactFlat is highly regarded for its accuracy in 3D to 2D CAD model flattening, generating 2D flat patterns which can then be sent to cutting tables for manufacturing. Accuracy is achieved by addressing key challenges related to material types, CAD modeling, and designer intent.

See ExactFlat for Rhino in Action in this Short Video Demo

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Fast, Accurate & Simple 3D to 2D CAD Model Flattening

Current practices for creating 2D flat patterns from 3D CAD inputs usually involve physical prototypes, and multi-step processes of iterative optimization of manual pattern development. ExactFlat 3D to 2D CAD model flattening software provides digital tools and processes which enable designers, engineers and pattern development technicians to maintain desired accuracy in a significantly reduced time frame, including:

1. Material Properties

Different materials have different engineering characteristics such as Poisson ratio and Young’s Modulus.  ExactFlat enables designers to associate these materials properties to the CAD geometry on a piece-by-piece basis.  In addition, allowable stress and strain tolerances can be defined to support accurate 2D representations from 3D geometry.

2. Mesh Creation

ExactFlat mesh creation and editing tools ensures high quality input meshes can be generated to bring uniformity, and consistency to the underlying flattening algorithms.  With high quality mesh inputs, desired accuracy can be achieved a wide across a range of complex inputs.

3. Advanced Flattening Algorithms

Designers and engineers can choose from a variety of different algorithms optimized for different purposes.  Algorithms for orthotropic and isotropic materials as well as for developable and non-developable surfaces can be selected.  As well, algorithms can be selected to minimize solve time for instant results or maximize accuracy for complex multi-piece surfaces.

4. Strain Analysis

Real-time visual feedback in 2D or 3D shows strain analysis giving designers and engineers input in to the location of possible relief cuts, darts, or sag.

5. Edge Associations

Unlike blank flattening programs, ExactFlat maintains edge associations when flattening multi-part surfaces that will be welded, sewn, or otherwise connected in subsequent manufacturing processes.

ExactFlat is fast, generates accurate results and is simple to use.  This makes ExactFlat well suited for the design prototyping and production of products that use all types of fabrics, technical textiles and flexible materials.

3D to 2D CAD Model Flattening Process - 2D flat patterns in minutes

ExactFlat is Optimized for Flexible Materials

When fabrics or flexible materials are stretched, they deform in the direction of the applied force (the axial direction) as well as in the direction perpendicular to the force (the transverse direction). This is one reason why flattening algorithms designed for metals are not appropriate for use on fabrics. Metal flatteners do not account for the unique characteristic of fabric and therefore are problematic when production-ready accurate 2D flat patterns are desired. ExactFlat solves this problem and provides designers and engineers with algorithms optimized for flexible materials.

ExactFlat Availability and License Options

ExactFlat powerfully extends the inherent CAD capabilities of Rhino 3D and SolidWorks, making those programs relevant and preferred CAD platforms by manufactures that incorporate flexible materials into their products.

ExactFlat 3D to 2D Flattening Product Chart

Supported platforms include:

    • ExactFlat for Rhino, 32 or 64 Bit
    • ExactFlat for SolidWorks 2014, 32 or 64 Bit

ExactFlat 3D to 2D flattening software is supported for use with all types of flexible materials such as fabrics, technical textiles, plastics, rubbers, vinyl’s, composites and more. ExactFlat is also supported for use with all types of surfaces including developable and non-developable surfaces.

How to Buy

To purchase ExactFlat for Rhino, please contact us:

    • Toll-Free: 647.933.9099
    • Direct: 877.977.7776
    • Email: sales@exactflat.com